[Beowulf] Need Help...!

Kamran Mustafa mkamranmustafa at gmail.com
Sun Oct 24 23:04:52 PDT 2004


Thanks alot for the prompt reply. Right at the moment I am asked to
purchased the following for my cluster:

1) MPI/Pro by verari systems
2) PGI CDK Cluster Development Kit by Portland Group

Purchasing 100 processes of MPI/Pro is really very expensive for me.
Similarly, for my 100 processors I have to purchase 256 licences of
PGI CDK because they offer licences in groups of 16/64/256 CPUs. Even
if I purchase 256 licences for just 2 simultaneous counts, it costs me
a lot...

Kindly help me in this issue as soon as possible. I will be thankful to you.


Muhammad Kamran Mustafa
I.T. Manager
Centre for Simulation & Modeling,
NED University of Engineering & Technology,
Karachi, Pakistan.
Tel: (9221) 9243261-8 ext 2372
Fax: (9221) 9243248

On Sat, 23 Oct 2004 22:41:52 +0200, Reuti <reuti at staff.uni-marburg.de> wrote:
> Hi,
> <snip>
> > Please give us a bit more detail. In particular, what software are we
> > talking about?  Different packages have very different licensing schmea,
> > and one usually has to go with what a package supports.  For example,
> > matlab is in use on some clusters on campus here.  matlab uses a
> > license manager that can regulate the number of instances of matlab in
> > use on a cluster.  Quite a few packages, actually, use a license manager
> > that can regulate the number of packages one has to buy relative to the
> > number of platforms one wishes to run them on, but of course this is a
> > case by case thing.
> also when there is no license manager included, you have to stay in the range
> of the bought licenses with some counter in the queuing system you are using
> (with some of them e.g. SGE you can also control the interactive usage).
> Some software companies also have different license conditions for commercial
> usage (pay per machine or sometimes pay per CPU in the machine) or academical
> usage (pay per platform). Depending on the price, it may be cheaper to buy a
> site license in some cases (although you will use it in your cluster only). As
> pointed out, this you have to check for each software you intend to use in
> detail.
> > Compilers have a slightly different issue.  There there may be floating
> > license managers, but because compiler usage is sporadic many sites just
> > buy a single license and put in on a specific node, e.g. the head node
> > or the server node (which has direct access to the disk and thus avoids
> Agreed.
> > a networking hit).  The issue there is libraries -- many compilers come
> > with special libraries that are part of how they get good performance.
> > In some cases the libraries can be used on many systems as long as you
> > buy the compiler/library package for one.  I don't know the exact state
> > of things now but at one point in time at least you had to by library
> > licenses for every node for at least some compilers out there in order
> > to run the binaries generated by a compiler-licensed node.
> E.g. the Portland license allows you also to sell the compiled program and
> distribute some .so files without any extra fee. For the Intel ones, you may in
> addition distribute the .a files. In each case there is a detailed list, what
> library files are valid for it. So it should be save to use them (the
> libraries) on all nodes in a cluster also.
> > Unfortunately, most of the companies about clusters and what consitutes
> > "reasonable" cost scaling in a cluster where 50-500 systems are
> > literally clones of a basic node configuration, and will cheerily charge
> > hundreds of dollars per node as if those nodes generate some sort of
> > incremental cost for "support".  I think it is safe to say that "most"
> > cluster sites avoid this cost by using e.g. Centos (logo-free GPL-based
> > rebuild of RHEL), Fedora Core, Debian, Caosity -- one of the still-free
> What about SuSE? You can download some floppies from their server and install
> it over net. And if you want: you can buy support.
> Cheers - Reuti
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